Law Students from Public Universities most likely to fail Bar Exams, Report

Law students graduating from public universities have a higher chance of failing Bar Examinations compared to their colleagues from private institutions, new report shows.

The shocking details on how more students from the top three public universities fail to make it through the Kenya School of Law (KSL) examination are contained in a report by the Task Force on Legal Sector Reforms chaired by Fred Ojiambo.

The Task Force constituted by Attorney General Githu Muigai on September 26, 2016, was charged with the role of evaluating, reviewing and making recommendations on four key issues including the legal sector practice licensing and membership process, institutional structure, criteria and participation mechanisms.

According to the report, Kenyatta University leads the pack of institutions whose graduates fail Bar Examinations conducted by the Council of Legal Education (CLE). Some 30% of candidates who failed the Bar Examination had obtained their undergraduate (LLB) degree from Kenyatta University.

Moi University was ranked second with 22% while the Parklands Campus of the University of Nairobi comes third with 20%. However, candidates from the University of Nairobi (Main Campus) contribute 5% of those who failed the examinations as JKUAT graduates make 2%.

Nine institutions were captured in the report, five of which were public universities. Bar examinations are a statutory requirement of any law graduate seeking to join the legal profession in Kenya.

According to the report, 79% of law graduates who failed Bar Examinations in the last eight years are graduates of these public universities. The examination is made up of 40% oral tests and projects and 60% sit-in examination. Additionally, the graduates have to undergo a mandatory pupilage of 6 months.

Catholic University led the pack among private universities with 8% of those who failed coming from the institution followed by Kabarak University, Mount Kenya University and Nazarene University with 6%, 4%, and 2% respectively.

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